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What are Access Arrangements and how do I apply?

We recognise that although some candidates cope with the learning demands of a course and demonstrate attainment in the skills being assessed they still face unnecessary barriers when it comes to the standard assessment.

Such barriers may result from:

  • a permanent or long-term disability or learning difficulty
  • a temporary disability, illness or indisposition
  • the immediate circumstances of the assessment

Access Arrangements are pre-exam arrangements made on behalf of a candidate with particular needs. For example, the use of a scribe, modified papers or extra time.

What are Centre-delegated Access Arrangements?

These are arrangements that schools can put in place for candidates without the prior permission of Cambridge. Cambridge schools must retain the evidence supporting the arrangement.

The arrangements available to schools to delegate include: 

  • Extra time up to 25% (not permitted in syllabuses where time is the focus of the exam)
  • Word processors
  • Supervised rest breaks
  • Separate invigilation
  • Transcript
  • Prompter
  • Read Aloud NOT A READER
  • Coloured paper/coloured overlays
  • Visual aids e.g. magnifying glasses
  • Colour naming
  • Simple translation dictionaries
  • Live speakers (for use with a transcript of the listening paper for the hearing impaired) 

How do I let Cambridge know about arrangements I have delegated?

All arrangements permitted must be recorded on Preparation - Form 4 available here.

What arrangements must I request from Cambridge? 

All non-delegated arrangements must have prior permission from Cambridge before schools can implement them for a candidate. These arrangements include: 

  • Readers
  • Scribes
  • Practical Assistants
  • Extra time over 25%
  • Voice-activated software
  • Alternative accommodation
  • Coursework extensions
  • Cards used by prompters
  • Exemptions from speaking and listening 

How do I apply for Non-delegated Access Arrangements?

All Non-delegated Access Arrangements should be requested using Preparation - Form 1 available here.

Schools must send supporting medical or psychological evidence in English with all applications. Schools may provide a translation if necessary, together with the original document.

What types of modified papers are available?

Schools can request one of the following types of modification depending on the candidate's disability: 

  • A3 unmodified
  • A4 18pt bold (modified)
  • Braille
  • Language modified (carrier language)
  • Transcript of listening tapes
  • Tactile diagrams  

How do I apply for modified papers?

Modified papers should be requested using a Preparation - Form 3.

How will I be notified of the outcome/decision regarding a request for Access Arrangements?

We will send an outcome letter once your application has been reviewed.

Further details on Access Arrangements can be found in section 1.2 of the Cambridge Handbook available here.

 

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